Page images
PDF
EPUB

sick of this tawdry composition of ribands, silks, and jewels, and therefore cast my eye on a dame which was just the reverse of it. I need not tell my reader that the lady before described was Popery, or that she I am going to describe is Presbytery. She sat on the left-hand of the venerable matron, and so much resembled her in the features of her countenance, that she seemed her sister; but at the same time that one observed a likeness in her beauty, one could not but take notice, that there was something in it sickly and splenetic. Her face 'had enough to discover the relation : but it was drawn up into a peevish figure, soured with discontent, and overcast with melancholy. She seemed offended at the matron for the shape of her hat, as too much resembling the triple coronet of the person who sat by her. One might see likewise, that she dissented from the white apron and the cross; for which reasons she had made herself a plain homely dowdy, - and turned her face towards the sectaries that sat on her left-hand, as being afraid of looking upon the matron, lest she should see the 'harlot by her.

On the right-hand of Popery sat Judaism, represented by an old man embroidered with phylacteries, and distinguished by many typical figures, which I had not skill enough to unriddle. He was placed among the rubbish of a temple; but, instead of weeping over it, which I should have expected from him, he was counting out a bag of money upon the ruins of it.

On his right-hand was Deism, or Natural Religion. This was a figure of an half-naked awkward country wench, who, with proper ornaments and education, would have made an agreeable and beautiful appearance; but, for want of those advantages, was such a spectacle as a man would blush to look upon.

“I have now," continued

my friend,

given you

VOL. IV.

[ocr errors]

zon.

an account of those who were placed on the righthand of the matron, and who, according to the order in which they sat, were Deism, Judaism, and Popery. On the left-hand, as I told you, appeared Presbytery. The next to her was a figure which somewhat puzzled me: it was that of a man looking, with horror in his eyes, upon a silver bason filled with water. Observing something in his countenance that looked like lunacy, I fancied at first, that he was to express that kind of distraction which the physicians call the hydro-phobia; but considering what the intention of the show was, I immediately recollected myself, and concluded it to be Anabaptism.

* The next figure was a man that sat under a most profound composure of mind.

He wore a hat whose brims were exactly parallel with the hori

His garment had neither sleeve nor skirt, nor so much as a superfluous button. What they called his cravat, was a little piece of white linen quilled with great exactness, and hanging below his chin about two inches. Seeing a book in his hand, I asked our artist what it was; who told me it was • The Quaker's Religion :' upon which I desired a sight of it. Upon perusal, I found it to be nothing but a new-fashioned grammar, or an art of abridging ordinary discourse. The nouns were reduced to

small number, as the Light, Friend, Babylon. The principal of his pronouns was thou ; and as for you, ye, and yours, I found they were not looked upon as parts of speech in this grammar. All the verbs wanted the second person plural; the participles ended all in ing or ed, which were marked with a particular accent. There were no adverbs besides yea and nay. The same thrift was observed in the prepositions. The conjunctions were only hem! and ha! and the interjections brought under the three heads of sighing, sobbing, and groaning.

a very

“ There was at the end of the grammar a little nomenclature, called, The Christian Man's Vocabulary,' which gave new appellations, or, if you will, Christian names, to almost every thing in life. I replaced the book in the hand of the figure, not without admiring the simplicity of its garb, speech, and behaviour.

“Just opposite to this row of religions, there was a statue dressed in a fool's coat, with a cap of bells upon his head, laughing and pointing at the figures that stood before him. This idiot is supposed to say in his heart what David's fool did some thousands of years ago, and was therefore designed as a proper representative of those among us, who are called Atheists and Infidels by others, and Free-thinkers by themselves. • There were many

other

groups of figures which I did not know the meaning of; but seeing a collection of both sexes turning their backs upon pany, and laying their heads very close together, I inquired after their religion, and found that they called themselves the Philadelphians, or the family of love.

“In the opposite corner there sat another little congregation of strange figures, opening their mouths as wide as they could gape, and distinguished by the title of the Sweet Singers of Israel.

“I must not omit that in this assembly of wax there were several pieces that moved by clock-work, and gave great satisfaction to the spectators. Behind the matron there stood one of these figures, and behind Popery another, which, as the artist told us, were each of them the genius of the person they attended. That behind Popery represented Persecution, and the other Moderation. The first of these moved by secret springs towards a great heap of dead bodies, that lay piled upon one another at a considerable distance behind the principal figures.

the com

There were written on the foreheads of these dead men, several hard words, as, Pre-Adamites, Sabbatarians, Cameronians, Muggletonians, Brownists, Independents, Masonists, Comisars, and the like. At the approach of Persecution, it was so contrived, that as she held up her bloody flag, the whole assembly of dead men, like those in the 'Rehearsal,' started up and drew their swords. This was followed by great clashings and noise, when, in the midst of the tumult, the figure of Moderation moved gently towards this new army, which, upon her holding up a paper in her hand, inscribed, Liberty of Conscience,' immediately fell into a heap of carcasses, remaining in the same quiet posture in which they lay at first.

N° 258. SATURDAY, DECEMBER 2, 1710.

Occidit miseros crambe repetita-

Juv. Sat. vii. 154.
The same stale viands, serv'd up o'er and o'er,
The stomach nauseates-

R. WYNNE. From my own Apartment, December 1. WHEN a man keeps a constant table,

he
may

be allowed sometimes to serve up a cold dish of meat, or toss up the fragments of a feast in a regoût. I have sometimes, in a scarcity of provisions, been obliged to take the same kind of liberty, and to entertain my reader with the leavings of a former treat, I must this day have recourse to the same method, and beg my guests to sit down to a kind of Saturday's dinner. To let the metaphor rest; I intend to fill up this paper with a bundle of letters, relating to subjects on which I have formerly treated; and have ordered my bookseller to print, at the end of each letter, the minutes with which I indorsed it, after the first perusal of it.

To ISAAC BICKERSTAFF, Esquire.

“Sir,

November 22, 1710.

“ Dining yesterday with Mr. South-British and Mr. William North-Britain, two gentlemen, who, before

you ordered it otherwise, were known by the names of Mr. English, and Mr. William Scot; among other things, the maid of the house, who in her time I believe may have been a North-British warming pan, brought us up a dish of North-British collops. We liked our entertainment very well : only we observed the table-cloth, being not so fine as we could have wished, was North-British cloth. But the worst of it was, we were disturbed all dinner-time by the noise of the children, who were playing in the paved court at British-hoppers; so we paid our North-Briton* sooner than we designed, and took coach to North-Briton † Yard, about which place most of us live. We had indeed gone a-foot, only we were under some apprehensions lest a NorthBritish mist should wet a South-British man to the skin.

“We think this matter properly expressed, ac cording to the accuracy of the new style, settled by you in one of your late Papers. You will please to give your opinion upon it to, Sir, “ Your most humble servants, ""J S.

- M. P. “N. R.I”

66

See if this letter be conformable to the directions given in the Tatler above-mentioned.

* Scot, i. e. share of the reckoning. Scotland yard. Jonathan Swift, Matthew Prior, Nicholas Rowe,

« PreviousContinue »